Trainer Borg backs Fred Evans' U-turn on turning pro
TRAINER Tony Borg has backed Fred Evans’ decision to stick with amateur boxing, claiming the Olympic silver medalist isn’t training hard enough to succeed as a professional.
The 21-year-old, who won silver in the welterweight division at London 2012, has seen his career guided by Borg at his St Joseph’s gym in Newport since he was a kid.
He joined the Great Britain squad in 2009 and, continuing to train with Borg, won gold at the 2011 European Championships before seeing his media profile go through the roof after his Olympic success.
Evans announced in April this year that he had decided to join the professional ranks, arguing that he had achieved everything he could as an amateur.
“The next Olympics is a long way off and I’d still need to qualify for it so I could wait for a year and not qualify and I’d be wasting a lot of valuable time,” Evans told the Argus at the the time.
“I’ve been through it all as an amateur and there’s nothing new to aim for now. It’s a new chapter as a professional and I’m looking forward to it.”
But he has since done a U-turn on that decision and will continue training with the GB squad in Sheffield.
Last week he was named in the squad for for this month’s World Amateur Championships in Almaty, Kazakhstan, and he will also take part in the new AIBA Pro Boxing event.
“Fred is back with the GB squad now and he’s going to compete in the new APB series and good luck to him,” said Borg.
“He said he wanted to turn pro but he doesn’t train hard enough for the pros.
“He’s the most talented boxer in the country in my view. He’s got all the ability in the world but at the moment he's not putting in the hard work in training.”
Borg is much happier with the Buckland brothers who he also trains at St Joseph’s.
Younger brother Mitchell won the Celtic lightweight title by beating Alway boxer Craig Woodruff at the Newport Centre on September 21 but Borg doesn’t want the 20-year-old to rush in his pursuit of the British title.
“He wouldn’t turn it down if it came along but Mitch is only a young kid and I’d like him to have two or three more fights first,” he said.
But older brother Gary is ready to win back his British super-featherweight belt sooner rather than later, according to Borg.
He added: “Gary will be back in action with a six or eight-rounder in October or November and then we’ll look towards an eliminator for the British title.”
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